A frequent question from IT administrators is why does OLI provide a new client serial number for each new server serial number?
When a network license is due for renewal (usually on an annual basis) OLI automatically will create a client serial number for each new server serial number and license file. We do this only for completeness. We should explain how the client serial number works.
As an example, lets say the ACME Company (for those in the know, see the Roadrunner) licenses two products from OLI: OLI Studio and OLI Flowsheet. So in the first year of the lease will create a license file that has a server serial number that enables both products, has an expiration date and determines the simultaneous number of users allowed.
The client serial number also had enabled OLI Studio and OLI Flowsheet. This allows those products to be installed. The client serial number does not have any expiration date or any sense of the maximum number of allowed simultaneous users. When the client side software is started, all the client serial number does is to allow connection to the server for validation. The client program identifies itself as to which program is being used and then then the server checks to see if that program is allowed, if the expiration date is valid and if there are any available seats for the user.
Now let's assume that the ACME Company renews its license for year two. We will also assume that there has been no change in the licensed products, that is both OLI Studio and OLI Flowsheet are still licensed. OLI will issue a new license file with both a new server serial number and a new client serial number. Remember that the server serial number has a sense of license products, expiration date and available seats. So the server serial number must be updated. However, since the client serial number has not sense of expiration date or available seats, the IT administration can choose not to update each client serial number. The old client serial numbers will still work with the new updated license file. Please note, this only applies to the number of products, not to the number of available seats to be used. That is controlled by the license file and not by the client serial number. Thus if the number of simultaneous users (seats) is increased from 1 to 10, then the client serial number does not have to be updated. This is also true if the number of seats is decreased, the client serial number does not have to be decreased.
Now let's assume the ACME Company wants to add a new product, the OLI Developer Engine. This is a new product which will require a new server serial number and license file. A new client serial number will also be generated. If the end-user does not want to use the new product then the existing client serial number will still be serviceable. No change in client serial number will be required. However, if the end-user wants to use the new product then the client serial number will have to be updated. So in this scenario the only update required is if the end-user wants to use the new licensed product.
The final scenario, if the ACME Company no longer wants to license a product such as OLI Flowsheet, then a new server serial number, client serial number and license file will be created. The end-user must use the updated client serial number since the client serial number will attempt to validate all products encoded. So the old client serial number in our example has two products encoded while the server serial number will have only one. This will cause the following error message: Serial Number Provided (V2-XXXX-XXXX-XXXX-XXXX-XXXX-XXXX) has options that the license server does not support
- The client serial number DOES NOT have to be updated when the server serial number and licensed file is updated if there is no change in licensed products.
- The client serial number SHOULD BE updated if the number of licensed products is increased but only if the end-user requires the new products
- The client serial number MUST BE updated if the number of licensed products is decreased.